A Peek into the Plasmidome of Global Sewage – Philipp Kirstahler – mSystems *The authors describe a laboratory and bioinformatics workflow for the recovery of plasmids and other potential extrachromosomal DNA elements from complex microbiomes.
The social dilemmas of climate change and antibiotic resistance: an analytic comparison and discussion of policy implications – Niklas Harring – Humanities and Social Sciences Communications *This article analyses climate change and antimicrobial resistance within the context of game theory. Previous literature has identified these problems as common tragedies, where inherent incentive structures encourage selfish overuse of existing resources. While the game theoretical models provide a helpful conceptual basis, the present analysis suggests discrepancies between some of the theoretical assumptions and the practical realities of climate change and antimicrobial resistance.
Review: Antibiotic resistance: time of synthesis in a post-genomic age – Teresa Gil-Gil – Computational and Structural Biotechnology Journal *The authors analyzed the capacities and drawbacks of the tools that are currently in use for the global analysis of AR, aiming to identify the more useful targets for effective corrective interventions.
Manure Microbial Communities and Resistance Profiles Reconfigure after Transition to Manure Pits and Differ from Those in Fertilized Field Soil – Kimberley V. Sukhum – mBio *The authors evaluated that on dairy farms, the storage of cow manure in manure pits and subsequent application to field soil as a fertilizer may facilitate the spread of the mammalian gut microbiome and its associated ARGs to the environment. To determine the extent of both taxonomic and resistance similarity during these transitions, they collected fresh manure, manure from pits, and field soil across 15 different dairy farms for three consecutive seasons and used a combination of shotgun metagenomic sequencing and functional metagenomics to quantitatively interrogate taxonomic and ARG compositional variation on farms.
Antibody-dependent enhancement and SARS-CoV-2 vaccines and therapies – Wen Shi Lee – Nature Microbiology *The authors described the key ADE mechanisms and discussed mitigation strategies for SARS-CoV-2 vaccines and therapies in development and about the risk of ADE in SARS-CoV-2. They outline recently published data to evaluate the risks and opportunities for antibody-based protection against SARS-CoV-2.
Forecasting the dissemination of antibiotic resistance genes across bacterial genomes – Mostafa M. H. Ellabaan – Nature Communications *The authors predict the potential future dissemination of known ARGs by using statistical framework to identify putative horizontally transferred ARGs and the groups of bacteria that disseminate them. Analysis of ARG-surrounding sequences identify genes encoding putative mobilisation elements such as transposases and integrases that may be involved in gene transfer between genomes.
Review: Epidemiology and Molecular Basis of Multidrug Resistance in Rhodococcus equi – Sonsiray Álvarez Narváez – Microbiology and Molecular Biology Reviews *This review summarizes the factors that contributed to the development and spread of MDR R. equi, the molecular epidemiology of the emergence of MDR R. equi, the repercussions of MDR R. equi for veterinary and human medicine, and measures that might mitigate antimicrobial resistance at horse-breeding farms, such as alternative treatments to traditional antibiotics.
Review: Monitoring antibiotic resistance genes in wastewater treatment: Current strategies and future challenges – Anh Q. Nguyen – Science of the Total Environment *Wastewater treatment is a double-edged sword that can act as either a pathway for AMR spread or as a barrier to reduce the environmental release of anthropogenic AMR. This review highlights significant knowledge gaps including inconsistencies in ARG reporting units, lack of ARG/ARB monitoring surrogates, lack of a standardised protocol for determining ARG removal via wastewater treatments, and the inability to support appropriate risk assessment.
March digest features review on nonlytic antimicrobial functions of complement, metabolic fitness models, BActeriophage SElection for your Laboratory (a collection of representative E. coli phages), Dr Dirt game, and more. Check out our list of AMR focused podcasts. Enjoy!
Metabolic fitness landscapes predict the evolution of antibiotic resistance – Fernanda Pinheiro – Nature Ecology & Evolution *Pinheiro et al. developed a metabolic model of antibiotic resistance that predicts the dosage-response of common resistance mutants and prevalent resistance mechanisms depending on drug levels and nutrient conditions. These predictions are confirmed by empirical growth inhibition curves and genomic data of Escherichia coli populations exposed to streptomycin challenge.
February digest highlights the current state of vaccines against resistant bacterial pathogens and novel ways by which they can evolve resistance, effects of common sweeteners on conjugation rate and how international travel contributes to spread of multidrug-resistant bacteria, and much more. Check out our selection of AMR focused podcast episodes and webinars. Happy reading!
*Mutations targeting central carbon and energy metabolism arise in response to antibiotic treatment. These mutations confer resistance and are highly prevalent in clinical pathogens, expanding the known means by which pathogenic microbes can evolve resistance.